July 31, 2014

Elyria
Mostly cloudy
79°F
test

Lorain County Children Services views video on waivers

Red Jet Films producer  Carly Champoux interviews Christina Turcola, Lorain County Children Services supervisor, in September. CHRONICLE FILE PHOTO

Red Jet Films producer Carly Champoux interviews Christina Turcola, Lorain County Children Services supervisor, in September. CHRONICLE FILE PHOTO

ELYRIA — Lorain County Children Services board members viewed the finished product of a video on Title IV-E waivers featuring Lorain County Children Services.

The Casey Family Programs video, filmed by Seattle-based production crew Red Jet Films, highlights the benefits of flexible federal child welfare funding and the agency’s success in utilizing the flexible funding.

In September, Casey Family Programs spent four days with the agency and its local and state partners to create the documentary. Film crews interviewed Lorain County Domestic Relations Court Judge Debra Boros, LCCS interim Executive Director Jane Robertson and Crystal Ward Allen, executive director for Public Children Services Association of Ohio. Crews also took shots of areas around Lorain County, including downtown Elyria.

The Casey Family Foundation declined to comment on the video project in September, but Robertson said the agency was contacted by the foundation in July because of its standing since 1995 as a model agency for use of Title IV-E waivers — federal funding given to children services agencies.

Only a few agencies in Ohio use the waiver agreements, according to Robertson, and Casey Family Foundation is working to expand usage of the waivers.

Since 1995, LCCS is one of 18 agencies in the state to the waivers, which Robertson said can be used in various ways, rather than funding that is only given for children in a licensed foster care setting. Roberson said IV-E waivers ensure that children won’t linger in foster care.

LCCS spokeswoman Patti-Jo Burnett said she is pleased with the finished 8-minute, 34-second video, which has been posted to Lorain County Children Service’s Facebook page.

The video will also soon be available on the Lorain County Children Services website.

“We’ll utilize it. I think it’s going to serve Casey’s interests,” Burnett told the Children Services board on Wednesday. “I think this is really going to be a value to our stakeholders.”

Casey Family Programs is the nation’s largest operating foundation focused on foster care and improving the child welfare system.

Founded in 1966, Casey Family Programs works to provide and improve — and ultimately prevent the need for — foster care in the U.S., according to its website.

Contact Chelsea Miller at 329-7123 or cmiller@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter @ChelseaMillerCT.